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John Edwards and Robin Liddell Take Chevrolet Camaro GT.R to Top Podium Spot in GT for Second Consecutive Race
With GS Win Earlier in the Day, Edwards Becomes Only Fourth GRAND-AM Driver to Win Two Races in One Day
BRASELTON, Ga. (April 20, 2013) – Continuing their winning ways, the Stevenson Motorsports duo of John Edwards and Robin Liddell led the field at Road Atlanta to the checkered flag, and brought their No. 57 Stevenson Motorsports Camaro GT.R to Victory Lane for a second-consecutive week. The pair started sixth when qualifying was rained out, and the starting grid was set on team point standings for the Video Studio Ultimate Grand Prix of Atlanta, Round 4 on the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series 2013 schedule.
With strong driving skills and good pit strategy, they were able to keep their Camaro in the front of the field at the conclusion of the 2.75-hour race. The victory marks Liddell’s 20th career win in the GT division and Edward’s sixth.
Earlier in the day, Edwards won the PricewaterhouseCoopers 250 for the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge in the No. 9 Stevenson Motorsports Camaro GS.R, to join Michael Valiante, Bill Auberlen and Paul Dalla Lana (twice) as GRAND-AM’s only drivers to win two races in one day. Matt Bell shared the driving duties with Edwards in getting the Grand Sport class win. The run moves the team up to third (unofficially) in the team point standings with eight races remaining in 2013.
“Congratulations to Stevenson Motorsports on the team’s win in both Rolex Series GT, and Continental Tire Challenge GS,” said Jim Lutz, Chevrolet Racing Program Manager, GRAND-AM Road Racing. “Both classes are very competitive, so to get one victory a weekend is an accomplishment, but to win in both classes is a remarkable feat. The teams and the drivers executed perfectly, putting together great race strategies for both cars.
“In addition, congratulations to John Edwards for scoring the “double” win. He and his co-drivers, Robin Liddell in GT and Matt Bell in GS, drove very smart races to get to the top of the podium in both classes.”
In the Daytona Prototype (DP) class the No. 99 GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing Corvette DP, with drivers Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty behind the wheel, finished third in the inaugural race for the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series at Road Atlanta to score the team’s third-consecutive 2013 season podium finish. The No. 90 Spirit of Daytona team of Richard Westbrook and Ricky Taylor brought home a fifth-place finish.
Other Team Chevy finishers in the 2.5-hour Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge race were Lawson Aschenbach and Eric Curran who brought the No. 01 CKS Autosport Camaro GS.R to the checkered flag in seventh-place; and, Ashley McCalmont and Bob Michaelian who finished 14th in-class driving the No. 00 CKS Autosport Camaro GS.R.
The next event for Team Chevy in GRAND-AM Road Racing Rolex Sports Car Series will be the Chevrolet GRAND-AM Detroit 200 at Belle Isle Park, in Detroit, Michigan, May 31 – June 1. The GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series race can be seen live on SPEED, Saturday, June 1, at 5:00 p.m. EDT. The Continental Tire Sports Car Series’ next race will be at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Saturday, June 15th at 12:00 a.m., with television coverage set for broadcast on June 23, 4:00 p.m. EDT on SPEED.
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER QUOTES:
ROLEX SPORTS CAR SERIES RACE:
ROBIN LIDDELL, NO. 57 STEVENSON MOTORSPORTS CAMARO GT.R – WINNER
WHAT WAS IT ABOUT TODAY THAT JUST CLICKED FOR YOUR STEVENSON TEAM?
“Well we have got a super crew and obviously Mike (??) and the guys from Pratt and Miller on the perch supporting us with strategy and what they do collectively. John (Edwards, co-driver) obviously did a great opening stint. We are not that high in the points so it was always going to be tough for him. We knew we didn’t have a car that was very strong on the back straight which is what a lot of it is all about here. Over a stint we felt we had a decent car. A lot of it was unknown for everybody because we haven’t raced here before with these cars on these tires, so we didn’t know what the degradation was going to be like. We did struggle a bit on old tires. It really came down to thinking on our feet. The guys made a good call to pit early, take the tires and try and establish a gap with some quick laps when everybody else was falling off. Essentially that is what we were able to do. Really happy, again, we have won today like two weeks ago in Barber (Motorsports Park) with ultimately not the quickest car out there but some great team work, some great pit work from the guys.”
ROUGH START TO THE SEASON FOR YOU GUYS DO YOU FEEL LIKE THAT IS BEHIND YOU?
“You never know if it’s behind you. It’s pretty bad to have two poor finishes right in the first two races, but this is a team that always fights hard and we never give up. We always look to improve and we have some super people, great engineering support and great crew guys. We are usually a team for the last five years we have always been a team that on any given weekend we are always threatening for a win. I don’t think this year is going to be any different.”
JOHN EDWARDS, NO. 57 STEVENSON MOTORSPORTS CAMARO GT.R – WINNER
YOU WON THE GS RACE EARLIER TODAY GET IN THE GT CAR AND YOU WIN AGAIN. WAS THERE ANY CHALLENGE TO YOU AT THIS TRACK? OR WAS IT SOMETHING THAT YOU JUST QUICKLY ADAPTED TO?
“I think if you were watching the races it was always a big challenge. In the GS race Andy Lally was pressuring me at the end and I was really thankful for that yellow to take the pressure off of me. My stint in this race was relatively uneventful. We had to work through a little bit of traffic in the beginning starting sixth based on where we were in points. Then Andrew (Davis) was running well in the Porsche and they were getting a good run off the No. 7 so I never really had a chance to get by him except with some traffic and never really made it work. We came out of the pits in second when Robin (Liddell, co-driver) got in the car and the team made a great call to pit early, got Robin in the lead, had fresh rubber at the end and he made a hell of a pass on Alessandro (Balzan) to take the lead.”
CONTINENTAL TIRE SPORTS CAR CHALLENGE RACE:
MATT BELL, NO. 9 STEVENSON MOTORSPORTS CAMARO GS.R – WINNER
GREAT POINTS WEEKEND FOR YOU GUYS:
“It’s pretty surprising. I don’t think we have ever been in this position before. Really the team is working better than they ever have before. The pit stops, I think we gained something like 10 seconds on pit stops today. Everyone is just working overtime. The engineering stand they figured out this car without too much testing time. Obviously we were rained out yesterday so I am just completely impressed with everything. The car is exactly what we needed of it. John (Edwards, co-driver) had an incredible drive. So far we are looking pretty good in this championship.”
JOHN EDWARDS, NO. 9 STEVENSON MOTORSPORTS CAMARO GS.R – WINNER
PRETTY INCREDIBLE BACK-TO-BACK THERE SECOND LAST WEEK AND A WIN THIS WEEK:
“I think last week we were leading and I was a little bitter with a missed shift to lose it. I think we had a better car today. (Andy) Lally was there at the end I think we were pretty equal on lap time, but he was a little quicker down the straights but not as good in the brake zones. I think over one lap we were about even, but that made it stressful when his speed was coming from the straightaway and mine was coming from the brake zone because I had to work really hard there at the end. Awesome running with him I think we stayed clean. I didn’t think there was a scratch on the car, but I see some rubber so I know I got super sideways when I was next to Lally so I might have rubbed him there a little bit but other than that a really clean race.”
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